Can Solar Make A Dent In The UK Energy Chaos?
The UK is currently embroiled in an energy price rise storm that shows little chance of abating. The incentives provided to renewable energy producers are poor, too; as the Independent highlights, the rate at which solar producers can sell back to grid is 19 times lower than current charge rates. The energy supplies and regulators are missing a trick, however, as renewable energy is showing itself to be both affordable and efficient.
Government incentives have widened the solar panel installation market to a significant degree. In addition to the big energy companies now providing installation, Money Saving Expert highlights the fact that there is now an internal market between private installation companies vying for business.
Furthermore, VAT cuts mean that solar panels are more affordable in the long run. Plus, as sustainable industry analysts EcoWatch outline, the quality of panels is improving. With the entry of giants such as Tesla into the market, who act as a direct competitor to most energy suppliers, the options are becoming more diverse.
With improved solar panel efficiency and affordability has come increased uptake. According to PV-Magazine, only 4% of British homes have panels, but a boom is on its way. Certain firms have seen a huge surge in interest following the energy price hikes, with homes investing now – with summer on the way – to try and take the edge off the prices they’ll pay over the coming months.
Making a dent?
According to Wired, rooftop solar is already making a significant dent in the energy crisis. Despite this, it does leave out the lowest income households. Solar energy is a significant expenditure, and while the cost is easily absorbed by those households who own their homes or have good salaries, the poorest in society aren’t so well placed to benefit from the benefits of rooftop solar.
Accordingly, more needs to be done to bring that section of society in from the cold and help them to enjoy the solar revolution. Solar energy can be a sustainable and equitable way of providing energy for a huge number of households. They can help families to dig their way out of the energy crisis.
Increasing affordability makes them a realistic option for many homes, but more needs to be done with lifting up the poorest in society to help them reap the benefits, too.